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Department of Criminology & Justice Studies

The Department of Criminology and Justice Studies at Drexel University features hands-on career experience, community-based courses, and one of the only curriculums in the U.S. to integrate crime mapping, hot-spotting and intelligence analysis.

How did the War on Drugs of the '80s and '90s impact urban communities, from street-corner dealing and violence, to overall community health? How do so-called Three Strikes laws typically influence the decisions of judges at sentencing? How far will the War on Terrorism push the legal boundaries of government surveillance? How is “big data” used by justice, intelligence or private organizations to identify social networks, assess risk, and make decisions about crime policy and resource deployment? Drexel University's Department of Criminology and Justice Studies empowers students to address these and other issues of crime and justice policy.

We offer three concentrations

  • Criminology and Justice Policy
  • Justice Informatics
  • Criminal Justice
    • Each criminology and justice studies area offers students foundational knowledge and the tools of the discipline, while allowing them to specialize in their area of interest.

What is Criminal Justice Studies?

What is criminal justice studies — and what’s the difference between criminal justice and criminology? Criminology refers to the study of crime and justice in society. It uses sociological, psychological, technological and legal perspectives to theorize the causes and effects of crime and justice policy. Criminal justice generally refers to the application of those ideas and theories within a judicial system, with a focus on law enforcement and corrections. Despite the differences between criminal justice and criminology, the disciplines share a focus on preventing crime and ultimately creating safer societies.

The Drexel Co-Op for Drexel Criminology & Justice Studies Students

Through Drexel's renowned cooperative education program, criminal and justice studies students experience six-months of full-time employment, exploring their career options, strengthening their résumés and building a professional network in the process.

The Department of Criminology and Justice Studies offers a four-year, one co-op option; and a four-year, no co-op option. However, we strongly encourage students to take advantage of the co-op program.

Learn more about the Drexel Co-Op Program

Community based Learning in Crime and Justice Studies

The College of Arts and Sciences offers a range of community-based learning courses that allow students to immerse themselves in course material and learn side-by-side with community partners. To explore justice studies in America, we take our students straight to the source; we offer two of our core courses in community settings — one of which (Prison, Society and You) is taught in a local prison.

View Current Community-based Learning Classes

“Dr. Cyndi Rickards stated in the course Prison, Society, and You that 'People, are not/cannot be inherently bad, but instead just make bad choices.' That will always stick with me."

Khalil McFarlane

BS Criminology & Justice Studies
& Sociology '21

Read more CJS Student Stories

Recent News

  • Drexel Dragon Logo Blue College of Arts and Sciences Student Fellowships Students in Drexel’s College of Arts and Sciences are scientific innovators, global explorers and leaders in education, communication and advocacy. Reflecting their accomplishments is the impressive number of national and international fellowships they received this year to support graduate education, professional experiences and research abroad.
  • Decorated Drexel Graduation Caps 2018 Meet the College of Arts and Sciences’ Newest Forever Dragons They’ve found their intellectual passions, expanded their worldviews, made friends and memories — and now they’re ready to turn their tassels! Members of the graduating class of 2019 share their advice, Philly faves, memories and more before they head off on their next adventure.
  • Drexel Dragon Logo Blue College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Awards The mission of the College of Arts and Sciences and the University could not be accomplished without the dedication and support of our faculty members. It is their pursuit of excellence in teaching, research and scholarship that reinforces our position as a modern liberal arts college, and enhances our University’s reputation as a world-class research institution.
  • Drexel Dragon Logo Blue CoAS Accomplishments in Brief We are pleased to recognize the recent grants, publications, presentations, awards and honors of the members of the College of Arts and Sciences.
  • Kolkata, India - Drexel CoAS Majors Share Favorite Travel Destination Oh, the Places You’ll Go: 10 CoAS Majors Share Favorite Travel Destinations Sure, you could complete your whole degree in Philadelphia, but why not take advantage of Drexel opportunities around the globe? With gorgeous photos, insider tips and stories from international locales, 10 College of Arts and Sciences students share the best place their major has taken them.

More News

Upcoming Events

There are currently no upcoming events.

Prospective Student Inquiries

Please send inquiries to coas@drexel.edu or call us at 215.895.1805. We look forward to hearing from you.


Undergraduate Advising

Mica Storer

Mica Storer

Academic Adviser
3401 Market Street, 110-H
215.571.4628 | mls46@drexel.edu

Contact Us

Department of Criminology & Justice Studies

3401 Market Street, Suite 110
Philadelphia, PA 19104
215.571.4628 | mls46@drexel.edu